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Driver Flees Police, Sparks 6-Vehicle Wreck

Posted December 21, 2007

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— Police said a six-vehicle accident caused by a driver fleeing officers backed up traffic on Santa Fe Drive and the All-American Freeway in Fayetteville on Friday afternoon.

Police received calls about a domestic disturbance involving a man, woman and an infant in a white Chevrolet Caprice sedan in the parking lot of the Ponderosa Shopping Center, 5701 Yadkin Road, around 1:50 p.m.

When an officer drove up, the car drove away, with the infant unsecured in the back seat. The driver, John D. Harris, Jr., 24, of Winston-Salem, refused to pull over and drove onto Santa Fe Drive toward the All-American Freeway.

Authorities said officers stopped pursuit, but Harris tried to drive between two vehicles stopped at a red light at the All-American overpass. The Caprice struck both vehicles, a Plymouth and Chevrolet Cavalier.

Harris continued through the red light, police said. His sedan was hit by a GMC truck, sending it into a Ford Explorer that hit a Ford Expedition.

The woman in the Caprice jumped out, holding the infant, after the impact. Officials said neither one required medical attention.

The driver of the Chevrolet Cavalier, Patricia Long, 47, of Fayetteville, was taken to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center to be treated for minor injuries.

Officers detained Harris and said charges were pending.

Police withheld the names of the woman and infant in the car with Harris.

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